After a long period of competition between the fashion fairs Prêt-à-Porter and Who’s next, both will work together in the future. About two weeks ago, former owner GL Events and French fashion confederation, ‘Fédération Française du Prêt-à-porter Féminine’ had announced to sell off their shares within trade show organizer Sodes to their competitor Comexposium.  Sodes organizes the fairs Prêt-à-Porter Paris, The Box, Atmosphère and The Train New York. Comexposium owns 50% of WSN Développement, trade fair organizer of Who’s next, Première Classe and Paris sur Mode.

This merge brings together the most important fashion fairs in Paris under one roof and is no surprise for industry insiders. In the last years, the large fashion fair Prêt-à-Porter has lost more and more its prestige as well as exhibitors. The aim of this buy-out is to strengthen the situation for all Parisian fairs. First changes regarding the fair strategies are expected as of January 2012.

The operational management of all trade fairs formerly organized by Sodes is taken over by WSN Developpement. General Manager and co-founder, Xavier Clergerie, who owns together with his partner, Bertrand Foache, 50% of WSN Developpement, will be responsible for all the trade shows.

Shortly after this buy-out, WSN Developpement also announced the acquisition of 50 % of Charly Expo, organizer of Mess Around, the international and growing trade show focussing on shoes. Their CEOs, Jean-Paul and Pascale Leroux, and the managers of WSN signed an agreement to bring together all the fashion trade shows and to feature a more clear and consistent offer. The Mess Around team stays the same.